The look of wedding invitations you send will not only says a lot about you and your husband-to-be they will also convey a fair amount of information about your upcoming ceremony. So it is important to plan type of wedding you will have before you make any decisions about your invitations.
Based upon quality of paper stock, lettering, color and design you select, recipients are likely to make a determination about formality or informality of event, thus how they should dress. The color of your invitations may suggest color scheme of your wedding. The quality of paper may indicate how elaborate or simple you wedding will be.
Stationery Stores—Most brides still go to a stationery store to select invitations. Once there, you can look at brochures and browse through manufacturers’ catalogs. The catalogs include samples invitations so that you can feel paper stock, see true color of paper, and compare different print options. Knowledgeable clerks will be on hand to help you pick out desired color and weight of paper as well as ink, style of script, and wording for your invitations. The only thing remaining for you to do will be to provide particulars.
There are only a few large manufacturers and they dominate wedding invitation industry. As a result, whichever stationery house you go to you are likely to see exact same catalogs. Unlike private print shops, because these companies mass-produce their products they are able to offer you greater variety at a lower price.
Online Shopping—There is virtually nothing you can’t buy on Internet, including your gown (although I would not recommend an online purchase for your wedding dress, which must be properly sized and fitted).
The Internet offers a huge number of sites selling both traditional and unique invitations. If you are bargain shopping for invitations, Internet is definitely place to go.
Keep in mind that you are always taking a chance when you choose this method. There is nothing like being able to feel quality of paper or raised lettering to ensure that you will get exactly what you want. However, knowing how different weights of papers feel and about different methods of printing can help.
Private Printers—Because of availability of mass producers and tendency of many people to shop for bargains on Internet, private shops are now hard to find. If you have your heart set on truly personalized invitations, look around. You are almost sure to find one somewhere.
Different Printing Methods
There are essentially four common methods of invitation printing, each with its own benefits.
Handwritten—If you are planning a small wedding (meaning 50 people or fewer), it is perfectly acceptable to hand write your invitations. Of course, this will be hard work, but you will save a lot of money.
Engraved—This is ultimate in invitation printing. With engraving, printer stamps back of paper using metal plates. This raises print up off of paper so that you can actually feel lettering. For most brides, engraved invitations are much to costly.
Thermography—This is most common form of invitation printing. With this method, ink is heated to create a raised-letter effect that is nearly indistinguishable from engraving.
Calligraphy—We all recognize this as another name for fancy formal script. This method is becoming more popular every year, Many of printing houses are now able to offer this print option as well, but it is not done by hand.